Underlying pre-tax profits surged 38 per cent to £397m at energy utility SSE (SSE), but these well flagged results still beat analysts' expectations by around 5 per cent. The board also stuck to its dividend policy and confirmed a rise of retail prices index inflation plus 2 per cent to take the payout to around 84p for the full year, adding that future increases will also be above inflation. The reported pre-tax loss in our table reflects a £331m adjustment in the valuation of derivative contracts to hedge commodity prices and borrowing costs as well as £89m for the purchase of emission allowances at the Medway power station.
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